Dorel (aka Cannondale) Confirms Guru Acquisition to Improve Fit, Retail Experience
Well, we guessed right, and today the Dorel group has announced their acquisition of Guru’s fit technology and the brand name.
Their plan is to roll out the system to CSG accounts first then expand it to any bike shop that wants to offer the service. And why would a non-CSG (Cannondale Sports Group) account want it?
In a nutshell, their fit system will not only help you get fit down to the smallest detail on your existing bike, but it’ll also spit out recommendations of specific brands and models that will fit you perfectly. Those recommendations aren’t limited to CSG brands, it pulls from a growing database (over 1,000 models as of this post) to find the best bike for the rider. Their goal is to make it a comprehensive list of all brands and they’ll pull frame measurements from brand’s websites if that brand doesn’t care to share frame drawings with them for obvious competitive reasons.
For the retailer, it drastically simplifies the sales process by making it crystal clear what bike, brand, model and size is best and which components make it just right. The result should be a customer that’s totally stoked on their bike and leave with a great impression of the shop and stick with cycling for the long term.
As for Guru bikes, they’ll continue to operate as a separate entity and license the name back from Dorel. CSG’s goal with this acquisition was to quickly enter the fitting service segment without developing their own system from scratch.
Click thru for the full PR…
PRESS RELEASE: Dorel announced today the acquisition and launch of the new GURU Experience, an advanced personalized bike fitting and consultative retail system that will help consumers reach their peak performance. The GURU Experience eliminates the frustration and continual trial-and-error process of finding the right cycling equipment for each individual. An innovative approach to bicycle shopping, it provides consumers with the ideal retail and cycling experience.
“We’re thrilled to launch the GURU Experience, an important step for Dorel Recreational/Leisure,” said Robert Baird, Group President and CEO, Dorel Recreational/Leisure. “The GURU Experience is a revolutionary leap forward in bicycle purchasing and owning. The way consumers shop is changing radically in and outside the cycling industry. GURU is the centerpiece of our overall goal of meeting the needs of consumers and our retailers and transforming bicycle shopping.”
The GURU Experience is driven by a highly individualized technology-assisted discovery process that helps the consumer identify the ideal bike, based upon their own unique body flexibility and type, personal goals, ability level and riding style. The first step for each consumer is to sit with a GURU Experience retail consultant and discuss everything from medical history, to athletic background, to fitness goals and budget. The next step is the automated fitting unit. At the heart of the GURU Experience, this unit features real time “on the fly” adjustability, creating a seamless, iterative loop of precise adjustment and feedback tailored to the individual cyclist. The real time adjustments replicate the actual motion of cycling, so the rider instantly feels and reacts to every precise equipment alteration, ensuring the perfect ride and optimized athletic performance.
The automated unit is coupled with GURU’s proprietary software. Once the consumer completes the automated fitting, the software will provide a detailed, comprehensive assessment of existing bicycles and products which best meet his fitting profile and goals. The GURU Experience software has universal application, ensuring customers can identify and choose bicycles from any brand. With specially trained GURU Fitting Consultants and consistent yet personalized procedures, GURU engages everyone from casual riders just discovering the sport to the dedicated athlete trying to maximize performance and competitive potential.
The GURU Experience doesn’t stop after the initial purchase. It’s a long-term resource for the consumer with incremental benefits beyond the initial experience. Consumers will have access to training, progress updates, coaching, bike forums and additional ongoing cycling resources.
“GURU brings the bike buying process to an entirely new level for consumers, where they have access to significantly more optimized customer service, and the most advanced equipment and processes available for becoming the best rider they can be, no matter their fitness level or experience,” said Scott Rice, Director Advanced Product Development, Dorel Recreational/Leisure. “Our consumer insights research shows that fit is the most frustrating part of the shopping experience for consumers. Adding more certainty to the experience of purchasing a bicycle will take the guess work out for consumers and ensure their long-term satisfaction.”
Elevated Through Partnerships
The GURU Experience is supported by partners including F.I.S.T., SRAM, Fi’zi:k, Zipp and TBC (Training Bible Coaching). In particular, the fitting philosophy and training program for the GURU Experience was developed in cooperation with Dan Empfield, founder of F.I.S.T. (Fit Institute Slow Twitch). Motion and video capture give the rider instant feedback and takeaway verification of their unique fit profile, while bike recommendation software and GURU/F.I.S.T. trained consultants ensure that every customer leaves with a bike that fits his or her physical size, shape and style of riding.